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jogoode

Panang Curry

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So I've eaten thai red curry for the last four days, lunch and dinner. Now it's time -- b/c I have no red curry left -- to move on to panang. Is panang a red curry, and therefore can I substitute panang paste for my "homestyle red curry" paste in the recipe I've been using? Or do I prepare it differently?


JJ Goode

Co-author of Serious Barbecue, which is in stores now!

www.jjgoode.com

"For those of you following along, JJ is one of these hummingbird-metabolism types. He weighs something like eleven pounds but he can eat more than me and Jason put together..." -Fat Guy

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When you prepare panang curry, use a little more sugar, make it with beef, and garnish with a chiffonade of lime leaf and a drizzle of coconut cream. If you want to be traditional about it.


Matthew Amster-Burton, aka "mamster"

Author, Hungry Monkey, coming in May

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Penang beef is the best Thai dish. Should be a drier curry. But it's the best.

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will any ol' lime leaf do or is kefir trad?


Drinking when we are not thirsty and making love at all seasons: That is all there is to distinguish us from the other Animals.

-Beaumarchais

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Kafir.

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We're really talking about two usages of the word "Penang curry," right? First there's the curry seasoning mixture. So, for example, if you get the Mae Ploy red and Penang curry pastes, they're not too terribly different. But then there's also the question of Penang curry the dish, and that's pretty different from a standard Thai curry. It's more of a meat-with-gravy dish than a stew.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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[Penang] should be a drier curry

Drier? Is this what Steven means by:

It's more of a meat-with-gravy dish than a stew.
?

JJ Goode

Co-author of Serious Barbecue, which is in stores now!

www.jjgoode.com

"For those of you following along, JJ is one of these hummingbird-metabolism types. He weighs something like eleven pounds but he can eat more than me and Jason put together..." -Fat Guy

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Right. A Penang curry is of a thicker consistency, such that it is typically served on a plate not in a bowl.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Right. A Penang curry is of a thicker consistency, such that it is typically served on a plate not in a bowl.

Does this mean I should use less coconut milk or cook the milk down at some point in the process?

Also, mamster advises precooking tougher cuts of beef for curry. What's the best way to do this to get tender chunks in my curry?


JJ Goode

Co-author of Serious Barbecue, which is in stores now!

www.jjgoode.com

"For those of you following along, JJ is one of these hummingbird-metabolism types. He weighs something like eleven pounds but he can eat more than me and Jason put together..." -Fat Guy

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I'm not sure how much coconut milk you're currently using or whether you're using any other liquids as well, but in a Penang curry you'd want to use about half a cup of coconut milk for maybe half a pound of meat. You warm the milk, mix the milk with the curry paste, and simmer it for a few minutes. Then you add the rest of the ingredients.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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What FG said about the coconut milk, and for panang I'd use a tender cut of beef, sear it over high heat, and just throw it in at the end.


Matthew Amster-Burton, aka "mamster"

Author, Hungry Monkey, coming in May

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Panang curry paste often, but not always, contains peanuts.

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I must admit I have not heard of Penang Curry - Due to my ignorance I thought it was Malay. Is it Thai ? A meat-with-gravy reference by Steven would make me believe that it's origin is indeed Malay with influences from the migrant South-Indian Muslim community in the late 19th, early 20th century. Just a hypothesis .........


anil

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Southeast Asia is such a wonderful mishmash of dishes borrowed, stolen, and crammed down eager throats, that you can find twelve opinions on the origin of any dish. As for Panang curry, the name sounds Malay, but the curry as currently constituted is closer to a Thai red curry than anything else. Although I guess it would be kind of like rendang if you used stewed beef. I'm not saying it didn't come from Malaysia, but it would be hard to prove either way.


Matthew Amster-Burton, aka "mamster"

Author, Hungry Monkey, coming in May

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Panang curry paste often, but not always, contains peanuts.

Plenty of Penang curry recipes also call for a little peanut sauce.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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I find penang curry to be very different from red. It's got a deep brown color, that comes from toasted spices, such as cardomom and cumin, which I don't think are present in red curry.

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I don't know about cardamom, but many Thai red curry pastes I've seen do contain cumin. I'm sure there are "official" differences between the formulations of the two pastes, but if you use a Penang curry paste as a straight substitute for a red curry paste the difference in the final product is not huge. The differences really come out when you follow the Penang-style "dry" preparation method.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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